tv Worldfocus WHUT November 2, 2009 7:00pm-7:30pm EST
hamid karzai is declared the winner of the afghan presidential election after his only rival withdraws from the race. how will the news affect president obama's decision about whether to send more troops there? secretary of state hillary clinton does what some are calling an about-face about israel's settlement policy. the palestinians express outrage. as the 20th anniversary of the fall of the war nears, germany celebrates the world's leaders who made it happen. and a man who dug secret tunnels and helped hundreds escape to freedom in the west. we will return to the philippines for our signature segment. tonight, how they see us.
from the world's leading reporters and analysts, here's what's happening from around the world. this is "worldfocus." major support has been provided by rosalind p. walter, and the peter g. peterson foundation, dedicated to promoting fiscal responsibility and addressing key economic challenges facing america's future. and additional funding is provided by the following supporters -- hello and good eve i'm daljit dhaliwal. we begin tonight with the latest chapter in the unfolding story of afghanistan. president hamid karzai is going to serve a second term. that became official today after his rival withdraw from a runoff due to take place this coming weekend. what is far from certain is whether karzai can become the effective leader that the united states hopes for and needs in
afghanistan. can he rid the country of corruption? can he raise an army capable one day of taking over from the unitedtates? these are all key questions as president obama plans the next phase of u.s. involvement in afghanistan. in our lead focus, the afghan election and beyond. we start in kabul with jonah hull of al jazeera english who found that the issue of fraud remains an undercurrent. >> reporter: just a day after dr. abdullah's withdrawal from the race, hamid karzai is declared winner of afghanistan's presidential election. >> translator: we declare mr. hamid karzai, who got the majority votes in the first round, and who is the only candidate in the second round, be declared president of afghanistan. >> repter: the chairman of the country's top electoral body, the independent election commission, said consensus had be reached among his commissioners baseon the law and in the interests of the afghan people.
international reaction was led by united nations secretary ban ki-moon in kabul on an unannounced visit. >> i sincere hope that with this decision, president karzai will be able to form a government as soon as possible. >> reporter: the iec's decision came after sunday's announcement by dr. abdullah abdullah that he was pulling out of the second round against mr. karzai. dr. abdullah said little had been done to avoid a repeat of the fraud that marred august first roun but the speed with which victory has been conferred on mr. karzai and by the very commission dr. abdullah had frequently accused of pro-karzai bias will raise concerns about how opposition supporters will react. dr. abdullah told al jazeera on sunday he was confident they would accept the outcome. >> our supporters will remain
calm, ensure utmost sense of responsibility. they've proved themselves in the past five months in a situation that the environment was at most unfair. >> reporter: the commission is still speaking to the media here moments after the decision wa announced by the iec. the iec ins it is the only body authorized under the law to take such a decision. and one commissioner just told me this commission is ready to accept criticism from opponents of mr. karzai. it insists it has never been biased. it is more than two months since votes were first cast august the 20th. now at the end of the period dominated by the ugly exposure of large scale fraud, a victory for hamid karzai. it is far from a perfect result, but a result, nonetheless. jonah hull, al jazeera, kabul. in neighboring pakistan, two more terror attacks today brought the toll in a month of
violence to at least 300. at least 35 people were killed in a suicide attack on a bank in rawalpindi not far from the capital islamabad and near lahore as many as 15 were wounded in another suicide attack on a police station. al jazeera went to ra wal pinnedy after the first bomber struck. >> reporter: it was a day when the pensions came into the bank. hundreds were waiting outsidpic. >> translator: i was sitting outside the hotel and all of a sudden there was an explosion. then there was a fire and smoke. a man was lying in the streets dead. a taxi driver's neck had been sliced open by debris. >> reporter: others worry, waiting for news of loved ones. >> translator: daughters, mothers, sister come here to collect their pension, because many people are handicapped and can't come.
so they send tir wives and sisters instead. >> translator: my mother came here to collect her pension this morning and she hasn't been home since. >> reporter: although the blast took place in the busy commercial district, there are a lot of military targets within the area. as you can see, the army have cordoned off of the roads into the blast site completely. this is supposed to be secure zone and the army's headquarters is just a few miles down the road. it struck outside a busy hotel. it was a suicide bomber on a motor bike. rawalpindi has been under high alert for weeks but in recent days the local government said it would open schools that have been shut for security reasons. with this blast, most schools now remain shut. as ambulances raced to the hospital ferrying the many dead and injured, questions are now being asked as to how a bomb blast could hit this garrison town just weeks after hostage-takers managed to get
inside the armyeadquarters in a siege that lasted 24 hours. questions that pakistanis want the answers to. some more on today's developments in pakistan and in afghanistan, we're joined by hassan abbas, a bernard schwartz fellow at the asia society here in new york, and a former pakistani government official. good to see you again. thank you for joining us. >> thank you. >> something that was lost in today's news about the bombings in pakistan was the announcement by the united nations, that it was going to be stopping its development along the dangerous borders between pakistan and afghanistan. how is this going to affect the average pakistani citizen? >> of course, it is not surprising but unfortunate especially for the ordinary people in the border areas who lack access to hospitals, to schools. they lack access to emergency support.
united nations was providing. so it will hit the ordinary people pretty seriously. >> let's move on to afghanistan, the decision to name president hamid karzai the victor in the presidential election. questions of legitimacy obviously have been raised. do you think that it's going to complicate the nato mission in afghanistan? >> it will not complicate if karzai will have some arrangement with abdullah abdullah and if hee all the players. and if he will distance himself from the warlords, from the drug dealers including his brother. if hwill do something more about eradicating corruption, but if he's not going to go in these directions and not take these steps, then things will become more difficult for him. >> do you think that abdullah abdullah is going to be offered a position? he has denied that there's any kind of power-broking deal going on right now. if karzai were to offer him something, what could he offer him?
>> i think he can offer him two things. one, vice presidency. or he can offer him that i will be head of the state in two years or two and a half years and you will be the president for the remaining two and a half years, but i think there's some arrangement behind it. >> would it give the government more legitimacy, given the fact that if a second poll had gone ahead, the voter turnout may have been lower, there were allegations of fraud which marred the first election. what exactly would abdullah gain from this? >> i think they should be thankful to abdullah. abdullah could have asked his supporters to create a big problem for karzai. so karzai will be much better off if he'll co-opt abdullah abdullah at this time for the cause of the people of afghanistan. >> okay. hassan abbas, thank you very much. >> thank you.
in morocco today, secretary of state hillary clinton tried to clarify comments that she made this weekend on israel's west bank settlement policy, remarks that drew stro arab criticism. she said that while israel is moving in the right direction by offering to scale back some settlement construction, it falls far short of american expectations. that was decidedly different from what she said on saturday when she praised the israeli offer to scale back, calling it an unprecedented gesture. she said then that continuing settlement construction should not hold up a resumption of peace talks. but a palestinian official strongly disagreed. >> resuming peace negotiations alongside, in parallel to the continuity of the israeli settlement expansion practices and policies would doom the peace negotiations of failure, simply because the peace
negotiations are supposed to be about ending the occupation, while the settlement expansion is about consolidating that occupation. >> for more on clinton's comments and the controversy that they have called, we're joined by one of our regulars, daniel levy, a former adviser to the israeli government and now co-director of the middle east task force of the new america foundation. welcome back to the program, daniel. >> thank you. >> whae of hillary clinton's comments? a gaffe or do they signal a change in policy. >> where there's consistency, dalj daljit, is they want to see negotiations resume, get beyond settlements and don't want to escalate the settlement issue with the israelis. however, what we heard in israel with the secretary standing next to the israeli prime minister was something of a new language. and the language the secretary of state walked back when she was in morocco. there she said it was
unprecedented, there was progress, but this wasn't enough and fell short of american expectations. those qualifiers were not heard in jerusalem. i think that sent the diplomatic world and arab world in a tizzy. >> talking about the rest of the world, the arab world, she called on palestinians to resume negotiations with israel, even if israel refuses to accept a permanent freeze on settlements. why would the palestinians do that? why would they take up negotiations again? >> well, first of all, the secretary and israeli prime minister are right in saying this is a new precondition. this hasn't been a precondition for negotiations in the past. however, on the palestinian side, i think what they'd say is, first of all, there was a clause in oslo that there should be no changes that affect the permanent status issues on the ground, and settlements do atlantic reality on the ground. i think ven if it was new maybe it was a mistake for 16 years to allow settlements to expand while
negotiations were taking place. so i think for the palestinians and the arab side, in the absence of a settlement freeze and in the absence of any clear plan or timetable for negotiations, there's very little sense that just resuming negotiations will get you anywhere other than to weaken the palestinian leadership politically. >> but do they show a tin ear for palestinian politics? >> well, i think this is something of a recurring theme. we saw it on the issue of there was a goldstone rept of what was done in gaza. this was done for the u.n. there was continuing pressure on the palestinian leader. now they're doing that again. i think unfortunately there's something of an inability to really read, unlike on the israeli side, what the politics are on the palestinian side. there's something of a dismissive approach to that. >> where do you think that this
issue leaves america's desire to push forward on the peace process? what kind of progress are we likely to make in the short to medium turn? >> i think it leaves a situation in which there's a recognition that the administration engaged early. there's an appreciation this is seen as a priority. there's an appreciation of the cairo speech. but there's also a gathering sense of what is going on in the last few months. and i think many people in the world are waiting to see this commitment to two states translated into a plan and just to say forget settlements, let's get back to negotiations doesn't strike most people as being a particularly promising or encouraging plan. >> daniel levy, thank you very much. >> thank you. we also want to know what you think about this subject. so our question tonight is, is the united states even handed or does it favor one side over the other when it comes to israel's settlement policy? you can tell us what you think by going to the "how you see it"
section of our website at worldfocus.org. one more note from israel tonight. over the weekend, the authorities there said that they had arrested a jewish-american extrist suspected of carrying out a series of hate crimes. jack teitel originally from florida is described as an ultra orthodox jewish west bank settle settler. authorities said he was behind the killing of two arabs and the ing of jewish peace activist. a police spokesman described him as, quote, a jewish terrorist. his lawyer told israeli television that teitel is mentally disturbed. next monday is the 20th anniversary of one of the greatest milestones of the late 20th century, the fall of the
berlin wall, which led to the collapse of communism in europe. three former leaders who helped shape this momentous event gathered in the german capital over the weekend to mark the anniversary. former president george herbert walker bush, former soviet leader mikhail gorbachev a former german chancellor helmut kohl. as he reflected on the past, the first president bush spoke of the hope for the future. >> that future generations might look back to the moment when -- moment of time when mankind really got it right. when we rose above the recriminations of the past and broke a chain of human discontent and resolved our affairs not with rifles but with reason. >> it is worth remembering that the berlin wall was erected in 1961 and almost as soon as it went up, people started looking for ways to cross from the communist east berlin side to west berlin.
hundreds did so through a series of secret makeshift tunnels constructed over more than 20 years. some with entrances hidden in houses on the eastern side. one of the heroes of that effort was hasso herschel, who dug several tunnels, at tis working with his bare hands. in all, he helped 300 people escape over the years. in south america this weekend, they marked an anniveary involving some much older remains. the sacred city of caral in peru was discovered 15 years ago. and work continues on the excavation of the site. at 5,000 years old, it is considered the oldest known civilization in the americas and thrived at the same time as the egyptian and mesopotamian civilizations. its pyramids, unlike those of egypt functioned as temples instead of tombs. one other item that caught
our attention today from china. some in beijing thought it was a little weird when they looked outside yesterday morning. it had been warm and sunny the day before. and even though the temperature plunged during the night, the city is almost always drier at this time of year. well, it turns out that china's weather modification office was at work again seeding clouds to create some much-needed precipitation. the earliest beijing snow in 21 years. finally tonight, our signature story, the first of two reports this week on the philippines. tonight, the complicated relationship between the philippines and the united states. if filipinos are often conflicted in how they view this country, it's understandable
given their history. the philippines was, after all, an american colony from 1898 to 1946. we sent "worldfocus" special correspondent mark litke to take a look at how the relationship endures for better and worse. ♪ ♪ >> reporter: it's been said that 300 years as a colony of spain gave filipinos their devout catholicism. while 50 years as an american colony gave them -- ♪ ♪ >> a bit of hollywood, pop entertainment, fast food, flashy cars, a very entrepreneurial spir, and a passion for basketball. back alley games right up to the philippine professionals, complete with imported american players for added muscle, they love this game.
just ask the american ambassador. that's her, cheering on her favorite teams in manila. >> i knew we shared things in common, a common legacy. i just never expected people to be able to quote to me what lebron james scored last night before i knew it.it's just amaz. >> reporter: christy kenny is a come to expect from a u.s. ambassador. she arrived here with a common touch, a very informal style that appeals to most filipinos. >> you can get that in washington. so many filipinos live in the united states. so many americans live, work, have been through here, are married to filipinos. so we know each other well. >> reporter: so well, she doesn't fret about the frequent anti-american demonstrations over various u.s. policies here, because, she says, protesters are almost always polite and respectful. the way filipinos view america does seem to be a love/hate relationship at times.
america was a colonizer. that's hated. americans fought and died to liberate the philippines in world war ii. that's loved. the u.s. once supported a filipino dictator -- hated. then supported a people-power revolution -- loved. we got an earful riding in the taxi of edgardo alonzo, who was quick to criticize some americans for acting like this was still their colony. do you think some americans look down on filipinos? >> well, yes. yes, yes. >> reporter: but then he was just as quick with his praise. >> we have high regard to the americans because of what they have done during the world war ii. >> reporter: there is no better symbol of the unique historical relationship between filipinos and americans than this solemn place, the vast american cemetery right in the heart of the philippine capital. among the more than 100,000 american servicemen who died in the pacific in world war ii,
nearly 17,000 are buried here. and six decades on, it's filipino workers earning $7 a day who still clean and polish the headstones. yet it took the same six decades for the u.s. to finally agree to pension payments for filipino veterans who fought alongside american forces against the japanese. it's an historical slight that many filipinos take personally, especially those who have emigrated to the u.s. or who want to. given the opportunity, how many of you would go work in the united states as nurses? every year, as many as 20,000 filipino nurses seek out health care jobs in the u.s. the st. joseph's nursing school is filled with hopefuls, and they're blunt about the reasons -- better pay. >> most of the nurses there are given high salaries than they are here in the philippines.
>> reporter: almost 20 times higher, in fact. filipino nurses are also in demand for both their medical and people skills. they're very proud of that. >> i just want -- other people in other parts of the world that filipino nurses are really one of the best people in the world, because we really show that we care about others. >> reporter: but they're also aware that filipinos often take the jobs that many americans don't want, especially in service industries. jobs often viewed as second class. do you feel filipinos, even professional filipinos such as nurses are still looked down upon in the united states? >> yes, i believe that. in our history, that when you are white, ysuperior than when you are dark skinned. i mean, there's still -- we all -- we know that. >> reporter: that old love/hate thing again raising its head, even among this country's best and brightest. but if there is one trait that allows filipinos to weather
these contradictory feelin tord america, it's their amazing sense of humor. filipino comic tim tyag lived for years in the u.s. he sees a lot of humor and pathos in filipino views toward america. >> like, yeah, we hate america, we hate american imperialism but at the same time, economy is so bad here we want to move there and start a new life. >> reporter: sitting outside a manila starbucks, where else? he said there's still a tendency to view america as a promised land, to want the pat on the back. >> like a filipino artist makes it in the u.s. it's a validation that, yeah, you're good. >> reporter: he says he even feels a little that way while watching philippine boxing sensation, manny pacquiao, one
who ranks among the best boxers in history. talk about filipino bragging rights. >> look at our guy. he made it. and he beat your guys or the other foreigners. so, like, take us seriously. >> reporter: to many filipinos, pacquiao indeed has become a symbol of this nation's achievements and growing self confidence. a nation of talented, resilient, industrious and independent people. yes, filipino culture does still reflect those 300 years under spanish rule and 50 years under the american, but so be it. this is who they are, and they are proud of it. for "worldfocus," i'm mark litke in manila, the philippines. and that is "worldfocus" for this monday. but don't forget, you can find a lot more internatial news and perspective on our website at worldfocus.org.
while there drop us a line about the program. we will see you at the same time tomorrow evening. until then, from me dalji dhaliwal and the rest of the team here in new york, good-bye. major support for "worldfocus" has been provided by rosalind p. walter and the peter g. peterson foundation, dedicated to promoting fiscal responsibility and addressing key economic challenges facing america's future. and additional funding is provided by the following supporters --